Former UCLan student stars as lead role in new British comedy movie

She knew she wanted to be a performer since first watching ballet at the Royal Opera House aged just three. Now, Lancashire-born actress Katy Clayton takes the lead role in new British comedy 'Me, Myself and Di'

Friday, 18th June 2021, 4:09 pm
UCLan former student and actress Katy Clayton is the lead role in the new comedy

It's a memory that takes all northerners right back to their childhood days - remembering cheap summer breaks at caravan parks on the coast.

After first just auditioning for a smaller role in the new movie, casting directors then gave the 27-year-old just 90 minutes to read over the whole script for a shot at the main part.

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Currently playing in select cinemas and set to be released on DVD next Monday, June 21, the Lancashire-born actress plays the lead as an unlucky-in-love woman who wins a trip to a Rhyl caravan park.

Talking to The Post, Katy said: "The message and story behind the film is just so powerful. It is all about this character who learns to love herself for who she truly is which is such an important message.

"With social media pressures and the challenges of life that we have to face, we spend so many young years being worried about what people think of us. It is so important to be comfortable in your own skin and learning to just love yourself and realising you don't need to change.

"She was a fun character to play - she is such a kind soul that always tries to find the positives in every situation and seeing the best in people. After the difficult year we have had, a bit of comedy and positivity is just what we need."

The film, which is first set in Bolton, follows the story of lonely Janet, who takes her sister-in-law Diana along to a cheesy coastal caravan holiday park when she wins the trip at a raffle.

Actress Katy said the film is not only humorous but instantly relatable to northerners who can match the characters with people they have come across in real-life situations.

After three years studying musical theatre at Preston's UCLan university, she toured the country performing in 'The Band' musical, based on the hits of Take That before landing her latest on-screen lead role.

She said: "There is so much brilliant northern talent out there and it has been so much fun to be able to just be myself and use my normal accent in this film. There is nothing like rocking up on set and just delivering your lines in your normal voice.

Katy at last weeks premiere gala screening. Photo by Kevin Scullion.

"There seem to be more and more northern voices coming onto the screens and along with the setting, it is so relatable and comforting to viewers. I think that is why we like soaps so much because the characters feel so familiar to us.

"I had read the description of the film and immediately fell in love with it. I read through some scenes, did some improvisations and then they asked me to audition for the main part of Janet and I absolutely loved her character.

"She is this wallflower who has just been ignored and overlooked for her whole life and finally gets a chance to do something for herself and learn to love herself. That trip to Rhyl is the best thing that has ever happened to her. It is such a feel-good film!"

Katy said that it was her years studying at UCLan that best prepared her for what is to become a star-studded future, with lecturers 'nourishing talent' and encouraging her as a young performer.

Katy stars as the role of unlucky in love Janet

Despite delivering lines on Coronation Street at aged six and being on various TV shows growing up, landing the lead in this new movie was her biggest gig to date, and says she can't wait to get performing again.

She added: "Growing up, all I ever wanted to do was perform. From being young I had started drama classes and did bits of TV work throughout my teenage years and always said I wanted to be a triple threat.

"The drama school route didn't go to plan for me, so my friend at UCLan encouraged me to join and thank goodness I did. It was a brilliant three years on the most incredible course where the staff really guided us and nourished our talent.

"Working on this movie was an amazing experience and it was great to work with such a wonderful ensemble cast. The audience really gets to laugh at us and with us.

"I just can't wait for theatres to reopen again after such a tough year. The arts are imperative for the soul and it's been a devastating time for the whole industry. I am excited and keeping optimistic about the future and hope people love the film as much as I did making it!"

Actress Katy stars alongside Lucy Pinder, Tyger Drew-Honey, Will Mellor and Larry Lamb in the new movie.

The official gala premiere screening was hosted at The Light cinema in Bolton last Friday, June 11 and will be released to buy on DVD from Monday, June 21.

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